With Stendhal

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With Stendhal is a delightful portrait of the nineteenth century French novelist Henri Beyle, better known to us as Stendhal.

Two linked texts, introduced, annotated and translated into English for the first time by multi-award-winning author Simon Leys, illuminate the life and mind of the great writer.

The first piece is a set of impressions and memories written by Stendhal’s famous friend Prosper Mérimée. Several vignettes reveal Stendhal’s character – charismatic, engaging, frenetic, hyper-romantic – accompanied by amusing anecdotes of him duelling, falling in love, and holding forth in the company of friends. The second is by Stendhal himself, a fantasy composed one idle afternoon, near the end of his life and for his own pleasure: a whimsical list of the supernatural powers he wished he possessed.

With Stendhal is a charming, entertaining insight into the character of one of the world’s greatest novelists, written for the enjoyment of all readers.